Verne Lundquist


Verne Lundquist

Verne Lundquist (born July 17, 1940) is an American sportscaster, currently employed by CBS Sports television.

Early life and career

Lundquist was born in Duluth, Minnesota. He graduated from Austin High School in Austin, Texas, before attending Texas Lutheran University (formerly Texas Lutheran College), where he also founded the Omega Tau Fraternity (ΩΤ) in 1958 before graduating in 1962.

He began his broadcasting career as sports anchor for WFAA-TV in Dallas and in Austin, Texas for KTBC, as well as being the radio voice of the Dallas Cowboys. Lundquist joined the Cowboys Radio Network in 1973 and remained with the team until the 1984 season. He was paired with future (and now current) play-by-play man Brad Sham starting with the 1977 season, the year the Cowboys went 12-2 (winning the first eight games of the season) and capturing their 2nd NFL championship in Super Bowl XII.

Nationally, Lundquist worked for ABC Sports from 1974 to 1981, then moved to CBS (1982-1995) and TNT cable (1995-1997) before returning to CBS in 1998.

Network assignments

Lundquist currently does play-by-play for CBS college football (teaming with Gary Danielson on the network's broadcast of Southeastern Conference games) and college basketball action, as well as The Masters and PGA Championship golf tournaments. He is also among the key voices of NFL Films, and in past years had called regional NFL games for CBS, NBA games for CBS and TNT, and TNT's "Sunday Night Football" telecasts. He also called television play-by-play on Seattle Seahawks pre-season games in 2006, 2007, and 2008. Lundquist's patented belly laugh and his contagious enthusiasm for the events he covers have made him one of the more prominent and recognizable on-air talents in network TV.

During the 1992, 1994 and 1998 Winter Olympics, whose rights were held by CBS and TNT, Lundquist and Scott Hamilton served as the announcers for figure skating events. Their performances was parodied by "Saturday Night Live" cast members Phil Hartman and Darrell Hammond (as Lundquist) with Dana Carvey, David Spade, and Will Ferrell (both as Hamilton) : in 1992 with Jason Priestley and 1994 with Nancy Kerrigan and Chris Farley did a spoof of the Olympics figure skating events, as both Hartman and Myers went "Oh!" when Priestly or Farley (in a pre-recorded performance) did an on-ice pratfall. Lundquist, after seeing the original footage in 1992, commented that Hartman "nailed it dead on."

Lundquist also backed up for Chris Schenkel on ABC's Pro Bowlers Tour in 1978 during a tournament in Grand Prairie, TX.

Lundquist is widely known for having a "man crush" on former University of Georgia football players David Greene and David Pollack. He would repeatedly point out that the "Two Davids," as they were collectively known, played on the same youth football team. ["Verne Lundquist is a Happy Man," SportsSavior.com http://sportssavior.blogspot.com/2007/11/verne-lundquist-is-happy-man.html Retrieved April 21, 2008 17:35 CDT.] On November 10, 2007, Lundquist ignited further controversy during the Auburn-Georgia football game when he attempted to perform the Soulja Boy dance with broadcast partner Gary Danielson while "Crank That" played over Sanford Stadium's PA system. ["Curious Index" Every Day Should Be Saturday http://www.everydayshouldbesaturday.com/2007/11/12/curious-index-111207/ Retrieved April 21, 2008 17:37 CDT.]

Memorable calls

Sports fans across America have heard Lundquist call some of the most dramatic moments in sporting history.

Lundquist was the voice of the Dallas Cowboys, and during the radio broadcast of Super Bowl XIII against the Pittsburgh Steelers, is notable for saying the famous line, "Bless his heart, he's got to be the sickest man in America!" after Cowboys tight end Jackie Smith dropped a touchdown pass, which arguably cost the Cowboys the game.

Lundquist was also the play-by-play man for what many consider the greatest college basketball game ever played, the 1992 Regional Final between Kentucky and Duke wherein Christian Laettner hit a 17 foot jump shot as time ran out, to win the game in overtime. "Here's the pass to Laettner...puts it up...YES!!!" In 2006, he announced another memorable college basketball game (George Mason vs. Connecticut) in the Elite 8. In George Mason's historic upset, Verne announced "By George, the dream is alive!" He was a play-by-play announcer in the "NBA Live '98" video game [http://www.rtassoc.com/gm_nbalive98.html] and is currently the play-by-play announcer in the "College Hoops 2K8" video game.

Lundquist also called two of the most famous golf shots at the Masters golf tournament. Most recently, Tiger Woods' dramatic birdie chip-in on #16 at the 2005 Masters, yelling "Oh my goodness! Oh WOW!! IN YOUR LIFE, have you seen anything like that?" [ [http://youtube.com/watch?v=HnRCENCYMcw YouTube - tiger woods amazing shot ] ] In 1986, he called Jack Nicklaus' birdie putt on Hole 17, with the famous line: "Maybe...YES SIR!" Lundquist may be famous with the MTV generation as he played himself commentating on tournaments in the 1996 motion picture, "Happy Gilmore" and also as the voice of college football games. Another pet phrase Lundquist uses on occasion is "How..do you DO!"; on a huge offensive or defensive play, a phrase he took from Southern California football broadcaster Pete Arbogast (who in turn took the phrase from venerable broadcaster Vin Scully).

Lundquist filled in for Ernie Johnson as host of TNT's coverage of the 2006 PGA Championship as Johnson was battling cancer.

Honors

At the 2005 Sun Bowl, Lundquist was inducted into the Sun Bowl Hall of Fame along with UCLA Bruins football coach Terry Donahue. In 2007 the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association elected him for induction to its Hall of Fame.

References


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